Inclement Weather and Emergency Closing Guide

Get Text Alerts

UMBC’s Emergency Alert text-messaging system will send you alerts about campus emergencies and weather-related campus closures. (Standard text message rates apply.)

Weather-Related Closings

In the event of inclement weather, UMBC will make every effort to decide by 6 a.m. whether the campus will be closed or opening late. If UMBC is open, classes will be held and no special announcement will be made. All employees should report to work or use appropriate leave, and all classes should meet.

For the most reliable closing and reopening information, members of the UMBC community and visitors can rely on these official sources of information:

Weather and road conditions are not the same in every area where students, faculty, and staff live, so the decision as to whether it is safe to travel must ultimately rest with each individual. Faculty are encouraged to arrange a system for communicating to their students should it be necessary to cancel class, and to be mindful that not all students will attend class based on conditions in their home areas. If the situation appears to be unacceptably hazardous in an employee’s home area, and they are unable to come in while the university remains open, the employee should use accrued annual, personal, or compensatory leave to cover lost time or speak to their supervisor to arrange remote work if possible.

Managers and supervisors will notify employees in advance if they are designated “essential employees” and must report to campus under particular emergency conditions. For questions about essential designations, please contact Human Resources at 410-455-2337.

UMBC Locations

The decision to close campus, open late, or close early only applies to the UMBC main campus (1000 Hilltop Circle and the North and South Campus Technology Centers). Students and employees at other sites should follow the inclement weather notices at those sites:

  • bwtech@UMBC operates its own text alert system. To ensure you receive all campus emergency alerts, employees of resident companies at both locations are encouraged to email to sign up for the bwtech@UMBC text alert system. Visitors and event attendees should check with their event sponsor.
  • The Universities at Shady Grove has a separate process for inclement weather communication. Please visit their campus alerts website for more information on delays and closures.
  • The Columbus Center follows University of Baltimore policies and procedures during inclement weather, due to its location.

Inclement Weather Messages

Closing announcements typically take one of two formats:

  • “UMBC is closed.” This message means that UMBC’s physical campus is closed. Employees designated emergency essential must report.
  • “The campus will open (or close) at ____.” This announcement applies to the physical campus. Emergency essential employees and remote workers should follow their assigned schedules. Critical employees should follow the announced schedule. Online classes will occur as scheduled.

Campus Activities and Events

If UMBC is closed, main campus events are cancelled. However, please visit for information about athletics events and for information about Retriever Activities Center and recreational sports programming. Consult myUMBC for updates about student events. For information on events at affiliated locations (e.g., the Technology Center), or within Residential Life, check with the appropriate event sponsor.


Information about campus transportation, including current shuttle operation, is available at


When a decision is made to close the campus due to a snow emergency, parking will be prohibited on interior campus roadways, including Park Road, Back Road, Center Road, Poplar Avenue and Walker Avenue. Parking will also be prohibited on the top level of all parking garages and decks, and on the center ramp in Walker Garage. Vehicles should be relocated to Lots 3, 23, 24, Stadium Lot, or the middle levels of Walker Avenue Garage and Commons Garage. See our campus parking map for the parking lot locations. Failure to remove a vehicle may result in towing at the owner’s expense.

Gated lots will be open when classes are cancelled but the main campus remains open. Clearing the elevated parking deck of Administration Drive Garage (Visitor Parking) is problematic under freezing weather conditions, so please advise your guests of alternative parking in Commons Garage, Walker Avenue Garage or Lot 7. If the Administration Drive Garage upper deck is closed, parking for the handicapped will be available along Administration Drive in the Service Vehicle spaces and in the Commons Garage.

For more information, please view the UMBC snow removal plan: a campus map showing the approach to clearing campus roadways, parking lots, and walkways.

Exam Schedules

In the event of a closing during scheduled exam periods — mid-terms or finals — information on new exam dates will be available via the UMBC homepage and myUMBC.

Emergencies During the Workday

When an emergency occurs after the campus has opened, information about early closing will be disseminated through the official UMBC sources noted above. Updates will be posted at as available.

Scroll to Top